31 December 2014

Happy New Year Everyone

Dotti won the zip case!! Congratulations Dotti!!

Well, this has certainly been the year. Last year at this time I was so sick from Chemo and it got worse! Now I am perfectly fine, got glowing reports from all my doctors and I feel great. My new hair is very curly and I went back to my red color which I had for over 30 years til recently. This is a poor quality photo from a phone but what the heck!!

So this is me wish you all a new year of health, happiness and creativity. Blessing to you all.

29 December 2014

A little giveaway

I made a small pencil case out of an old quilt. You will recognize the fabric from all the other items I've made from this old quilt. It's a simple little zip case but colorful and fun. Leave a comment.

27 December 2014


The colored set was won by Debbie who I still hasn't contacted me.
The second set of black,white and sepia Contees were won by Kathy and 
The third set of Contees were won by Elle.

If I don't hear from Diane in a few days, I will redraw a name from that days comments.

26 December 2014

And the other person is...

** Kathy won the second set of Conte Crayons. One more set to go!!

My daughter-in-law, Fiona. She is a gift from God and I am so delighted she is married to my son (who adores her!!) This is the cushion I made for Fiona who is breathtakingly beautiful.

This is the single layer "front" of the cushions and as you can see I have started to bejewel the points.

There is something about that top point - hum. I think because the fabric is a matching tulle (doesn't even show up) and it is the only one without beads that makes it look out of place - unfinished.

Yup. Sticks out like a sore thumb.

Needs changes

Rather large but very nice beads

A ring I made with three wraps of wire and stitched on as a hanging device.

Appropriate sentiment.

24 December 2014

Fun to make

**Debbie is the winner of the colored Conte Crayons. Email me Debbie, so I can get your address. Be sure to leave a comment for the last set of Conte Crayons. 

Do you have a friend who you just can't think of a thing to give. I have two folks that fit that description. One is my good friend and muse, Judith's daughter. Ellen is SUCH a lovely and giving person and I just can't think of a thing to give her just to let her know how special she is to me - that is until I came along this idea (not mine).

It is an embroidered and bejeweled cushion. It's not for relaxing on but to hang or place of a dresser. My ulterior motive was to have a small and fun project that I could do at night while watching TV instead of putting popcorn in my mouth! 

This is the cushion I made for Ellen.

Here it is with fabrics on the points awaiting bejewelment!!

My pathetic attempt to create a beaded blanket stitch boarder.

I just love this and I bet Ellen will too!!

23 December 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

Coleen Kole contacted me and asked if I would participate in the Around the World Blog Hop. Since I am "in the groove" at the moment, I felt this was a good time to plunge in. I have know Coleen for years and have watched her perfecting her craft!! She dyes all her fabric and has been diligent about learning all she can to direct her artistic journey. Her work is really wonderful and as I was telling her, I still have a vision of one of her pieces from a few years ago imprinted on my brain. Looking at her recent work, I can say she has a signature. I really love her work.

OK, now on to the questions....
1. What am I working on?
I am in the planning process of a large piece I am calling Time Line. I think of time as a line like the ones we made in history class that went around the room. This was a "dream" idea I had after returning from the Crow Barn and Terry Jarrard Dimond's deign boot camp. I sketched it out as soon as I awoke and I have just finished with the segments of time (on paper). Believe it or not, I am also working hard to create the "white" background for the piece.
If I get stuck, I make these little squares out of scrapes to get the creative juices flowing. Sometimes I just sit and make them for hours and they have taken on a life of their own. This is piece number two I am working on called "Conversations". Each square reminded me of a small group having a conversation. It should be interesting to see which piece is resolved and completed first.

2. Why do I create what I do?

Why do I breath? I have to. My favorite quote is from Sister Corita Kent," Nothing is a mistake. There is no win or fail. There is only make." This is a VERY early piece I made called "Make".

I have what one might call a compulsion to make. If I am not involved in cloth, then paint or clay or sketching or bookmaking. I HAVE to make every day. I love fabric and taught myself to sew at eleven when I begged for a sewing machine. Long story. This is a bit from the artists statement from my one man show:

“From the minute we are born until the day we die, we are wrapped in fabric. We have an intimate relationship with fiber. It is our comfort, our protection and in it we present ourselves to the world” 

 Fabric has been a life long "companion" and I feel very comfortable with it. It has been the one consistent media I use.

3. How does my work differ from others of this genre?

I believe there are no new ideas under the sun. Everything I see influences me. I remember a recent discussion on many blogs lately about the difference between stealing or being inspired. There are many things which inspire me, color being near the top. I am also inspired by abstract impressionist. Sometimes I am inspired by the "feeling" invoked in a piece.
So how does my work differ from others? If I used my own experience, probably not much. I am right in the same boat as other abstract fiber artists.

Some of my favorites are Rosalie Dace, Terry Jarrard Dimond, Jette Clover just off the top of my head. I especially love Terry's black and white work and as a total opposite, Rosalie's colors.

4. How does my creative process work?

Well, if I had an answer to that I would be much more prolific. I do have some creativity priming exercises which I discussed in question one. I dream a lot of my work and immediately sketch it out on awakening. If the idea won't let me alone (like Time Line), I start to flesh it out. I see it finished and just need to plan how to get there. Some times a concept or social issue gets under my skin and I need to make it visible through art. I made a series of over 20 portraits of my brother Eric. The first was to celebrate he fact that he survived cancer 13 years ago.

The one above was the first and my favorite (9" X 12")

This was the last (20" X 26"). After the first I used his image as a motif to experiement with various surface design techniques and I named each piece after a personal quality which also reflected the technique.

One thing I DO use is my sketchbook, drawing and even painting a piece before I start cutting up fabric. Here is an example.

I make art because it pleases me and I have to. I will never be famous or rich but I love what I do and I love my life. Everyday I get to "play" in the best sense of the word. I have no idea what I will do/make but it will be something enjoyable.

22 December 2014

Birthday giveaway

You can run but you can't hide. Those pesky birthdays will find you one way or the other.  My birthday was actually the 18th but who is counting - not me (smile)

OK, here is what is up for grabs. Conte Crayons which aren't crayons but a hard compressed chalk like stick. Today is the color set.

Tomorrow is the sepia, white, grey black set. (center)

The next day is the four pack!

Leave a comment any or all days.

19 December 2014

Finishing the "tin" book

** I am looking for one or two people who would like to have their blog and themselves spotlighted by answering 4 questions for a Worldwide blog hop. Leave a comment...

I have 12 sheets that make up my book and they are painted on both sides. Stitched into signatures, that is 48 pages.

These are the first six sheets front and back

Detail of the oil pastel resist

These are the second 6 sheets

Do I sew it as one large signature or 3 four page signatures? I think all together will be too bulky. It turned out three signatures was just perfect.

I stitched the signatures with colored thread that would match the center fold.

I used pegs to hold the signature in place while I sewed. 

I knotted on the spine since the mounting will hide all.

Stitched in place to card stock.

The thread is almost invisible.

I ended up folding just the card stock cover over the hinge.

Contact cement on both the book and tin.

You can see how the folded paper bent nicely over the hinge.

Done and done!

Now I'm thinking of ways to decorate the tin front. Any ideas out there????

17 December 2014

More playing with paint

So I thought if oil pastels look so good I wonder what water soluble crayons and color briques would do.

Cretacolor Briques

Applied with a texture plate

Sprayed - messy looking.

Pink and purple are oil pastels and the red circles are water soluble.

I used a wet paint brush

When I went to Malta to visit my son and his family, my daughter-in-law asked me if I knew Karen Dash. I said no then she gave me a box of colored pencils and the name on them was Caran D'Ache. Use those pencils to colored me embarrassed!!

I've had these water soluble crayons (below) for a few years. Too embarrassing!!

Dry above and lightly sprayed below. Much more vibrant below.

ProChem decorator colors are dead cheap and are liquid acrylic paints like Seta Silk or Dye-Na-Flo. I think they are $7.98.

Scribbling with Decorator colors

Lightly sprayed

Can we all say Rorschach?

Next post I will take a few more close-up and have the "Tin" book finished.